Connacht assistant coach Dan McFarland admitted his side’s indiscipline cost them dearly as Newport Gwent Dragons won their first match in eight in a tightly-fought RaboDirect PRO12 clash on Friday.
Pat Leach scored the only try of the match for the Dragons when Connacht were down to 13 men with both Andrew Browne and Jason Harris-Wright both in the sin bin while Tom Prydie kicked nine points for the hosts.
The 14-3 win for the Dragons ensures they closed the gap on Treviso and Connacht – currently tenth and ninth respectively – and McFarland was left to rue a missed opportunity.
“We’re extremely disappointed. We were clearly on top of the game for the first 20 minutes and, for one reason or another, the game swung,” said McFarland.
“We made a couple of mistakes, and then it was two yellow cards and they scored – it wasn’t possible to get back into the game after that.
“They scored that crucial try when we were down to 13 men. That was the turning point and effectively that cost us in the end.
“Building up to next week and our next match [against Edinburgh], we have to pull ourselves back up. That was a huge game for us and the lads are incredibly disappointed.
“Even with the swing, we should have had the composure to win the game. It’s going to cost us In the long run. It makes next week’s game even more important now.”